What age is a good age to give your child a dog to care for? It depends on the age, the input you want the child to have, and the amount of time you have to introduce the pet and child and get them to act as a cohesive unit.
There are other small pets that are easier to care for, like hamsters, guinea pigs, gerbils, rats, rabbits and chinchillas, but there is something to be said about a kid and their dog. According to one teen dog owner, Reese Stoneburner, having a dog is the most challenging, yet the most rewarding thing in the world. Stoneburner stated, “Having a dog is the best feeling in the world to know that you have a furry best friend.”
If you have reservations about getting a puppy with a younger child, there is always the option of adopting a middle-aged or senior dog; one that has had some house training. This would also mean that the family may have to experience the loss of the animal at some point when their age exceeds their on life. This can be good and bad depending on how the parents handle the situation.
If the kids are a bit older and ready to take on the responsibility of dog ownership, then you can consider a puppy. Puppies are a lot of work, but the sooner the bond forms, the more likely that it will remain solid throughout the life of the pet.
When a child forms a bond with a dog it can be the very best experience that they could possibly have in their life. This is because of the unconditional love that dogs constantly display. They are the best listeners and some say that dogs make the best therapists (because they never blurt out secrets no matter what!). As children grow and change, the dog will be the one constant that they can always depend on.
A parent that gives this gift of unconditional love that provides unconditional love will always be highly respected. Your child will never forget the fact that you cared enough to give them someone to care for.
One thing to remember is to adopt and not shop for when people choose the doggies in pet stores, that means that more puppy mills continue with their efforts or that more continue to pop up altogether. That means that more dogs could potentially end up alone and homeless in a rescue or a shelter later on.
Give the gift of love this Christmas. It is not too late and more than your child will appreciate your efforts!